1. <communications> (Or "multiple access") Combining several signals for
transmission on some shared medium (e.g. a telephone wire). The signals are
combined at the transmitter by a multiplexor (a "mux") and split up at the
receiver by a demultiplexor. The communications channel may be shared between
the independent signals in one of several different ways: time division
multiplexing, frequency division multiplexing, or code division multiplexing.
If the inputs take turns to use the output channel (time division multiplexing)
then the output bandwidth need be no greater than the maximum bandwidth of any
If many inputs may be active simultaneously then the output bandwidth must be at
least as great as the total bandwidth of all simultaneously active inputs. In
this case the multiplexor is also known as a concentrator.
2. <storage> Writing multiple logical copies of data files. Placing the
copies on totally separate paths to mirrored devices greatly reduces the
probability of all copies being corrupt. Multiplexing differs from mirroring in
that mirroring takes one data file and copies it to many devices, thus making it
possible to copy a corrupt file many times. Multiplexing writes the data files
to many places simultaneously; there is no "original" data file.
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